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General safety

Right of entry

While we have the utmost respect for your right to privacy at all times, please be aware that staff members reserve the right of entry to rooms if required.

Water-filled furniture

Water-filled furniture is not permitted in the room because of weight restrictions and possible damage from accidental puncture.

Broken glass

Broken glass should be wrapped well in newspaper and be placed into the skip outside the Clyde Street entranceway.

Liquid spills

Vacuum cleaners should never be used to clean up liquid spillages. A Sub Warden should be informed if you have a spillage so that it can be attended to quickly.

Emergency services

Emergency services are on duty 24 hours per day, seven days per week.
Dial (1) 111 for emergency services

Campus Watch

Dial 5000 for Campus Watch Security.

Computer emergencies

A helpdesk for computer emergencies is available on (479) 8888 (during business hours).

Arana Reception

If reception is unattended in an emergency you can contact the duty Sub-Warden on 6092 after office hours.


Security procedures such as the reception entry point, security patrols, evening lock up, and restricted-access plans are regularly reviewed and open to changes and improvements.

Residents are expected to observe lock-up procedures and cooperate with programmes designed to maintain the security of residents. The University “Campus Watch” Security department is on duty 24 hours per day, seven days a week.

Keys/student ID card

When you check in, you will receive keys to your room. Upon completion of course approval at the University you will receive your student ID card. This card doubles as your after-hours access to the College and facilities.

Lost keys

It is your responsibility to ensure that your keys and card are kept secure while in your possession. If you do lose your keys, you will be charged for replacement keys and tag, and the lock if necessary.

The replacement cost for a set of lost keys is $30 per key and $30 per tag.

Locked out

If you lock yourself out of your room a staff member will let you in.

Semester breaks

For security reasons keys are to be handed in during semester breaks if you are going to be away from the College. If keys are not handed in and/or advise leaving dates then you will not receive any food rebates for that period. It is a good idea to hand your keys in if leaving the College for any length of time.

Security measures

• Student ID swipe card access
• Automatically locking doors
• Contracted after hours security guards and external patrols
• Highly trained residential staff
• Surveillance cameras
• Emergency evacuation procedures
• Access after hours is via front door only, past reception
• Smoke detection systems in all areas
• Swipe card access to gym and relaxation areas
• Simple guest sign in procedure

Arana College operates a CCTV security system 24/7 for the safety of all Arana residents.

Fire safety

The University of Otago is committed to providing a safe living environment. Please call 479 5509 with any questions.

Candles and incense

Due to the risk of fire, candles and incense are not allowed.

Electronics and beauty products

Residents should be very cautious in using hairspray, deodorant sprays, popcorn makers etc, because these can set off the smoke detector alarm if used indiscriminately.

Hair straighteners and curling tongs must only be used in bathrooms.

Room personalisation

Room personalisation is encouraged, and supported, within common sense limits and fire hazard prevention regulations.

Any combustible items like posters and pictures should not be affixed to the doors, ceilings or woodwork.

Refrigerators, cooking appliances, electric blankets, electric jugs, and private heaters are not permitted in bedrooms.

Heating controls

Main controls for heating must not be tampered with. Clothes should never be left to dry on a heater, nor should the heaters be sat upon.

Hazards in hallways

Bicycles/drying racks etc are not allowed in hallways or stairwells as these create a fire hazard by blocking fire escape routes.

Fireworks and firearms

Fireworks and firearms of any sort are strictly prohibited on College property.

Misuse of fire-fight equipment

The misuse of fire-fighting equipment and alarms will result in charges for reinstatement of equipment and NZ Fire Service attendance costs.

Be aware a NZ Fire Service malicious callout can cost several thousand dollars in service charges. This includes activiations caused by hairspray, deodorant, hair straighteners and tongs, or any other product or action by a resident.

Any resident who interferes with fire systems or equipment or who maliciously or carelessly causes a fire alarm activation may be referred to the Proctor or Police and will have their residency at Arana College reviewed with possible outcomes including suspension and dismissal.

Appliances in bedrooms

The misuse of electrical appliances can create serious hazards in Residential Colleges.

Only safe, relatively low-wattage appliances are permitted in your room. These include hair dryers, shavers, hot curlers, study lamps, radios, small televisions and stereos.

If at any time an appliance fails or blows a fuse, a member of staff must be notified and the equipment unplugged and checked for safety.

Remember, hair tongs/straighteners must not be used in bedrooms.

Fire evacuation/escape in emergencies

Panic can be your worst enemy. To reduce panic, plan ahead. Before an emergency arises, make sure you know the location of exits and your meeting area.

If a fire occurs (or alarm sounds):

  • Don't panic, stay as calm as possible. You will need to think clearly to make the right decisions.
  • Feel the door knob with the back of your hand, never your palm. If the door is electrically charged, the muscles in your hand will contract and cause you to grab it.
  • If the door is cool, brace yourself against it, and open it slowly. As you leave the room, make sure all windows and doors are closed (but not locked).
  • If there is smoke in the air, stay low and move quickly in a crouched position or crawl to the nearest exit. The most breathable air is always near the floor. If one exit is blocked, try next nearest exit.
  • Alert others by shouting or knocking on doors as you make your way to the stairs.
  • Always escape via stairs - never use elevators.

Once you evacuate, report to your meeting area, follow directions of fire wardens and fire personnel, and never re-enter until authorized.

There are fire evacuation diagrams and fire extinguishers located on every floor as well as in the main public areas of Arana College. Please take time to familiarize yourself with the locations of fire exits, fire extinguishers, and alarm stations in Arana College.

Fire extinguishers

Tampering with fire extinguishers can leave you and others unprotected in case of a fire. If the fire extinguisher is gone, a minor, easily handled fire can turn into a major disaster.

False alarms

False alarms make the whole idea of fire alarms useless. If College residents can't trust the legitimacy of the fire alarm, they may find themselves trapped by fire in a real emergency.

Abuse of fire equipment, false alarms, and arson are serious crimes. Violators are subject to fines, University disciplinary procedures, and criminal prosecution, suspension or dismissal from the College may result.

Trapped during fire

If you are trapped during a fire:

  • If the door to your room is hot to touch and/or smoke is seeping in around it, don't open it
  • Remain calm! The walls, ceilings, floors, and doors of your room are designed to withstand fire for a safe period of time
  • Pack the crack under the door with wet towels, sheets, or clothing to keep the smoke out
  • Open/break the window if you are on the first floor, you may be able to drop out safely
  • Let people know that you are trapped. Dial (1)111 if possible, wave a towel, sheet, etc out your window, and yell
  • Stay low on the floor near the window. Placing a wet handkerchief or towel over your face and head is helpful in smoke-filled rooms

Remember that few people are burned to death in fires. Most people die from smoke or poisonous gas inhalation. Often, this results from panic caused by lack of knowledge. So, plan ahead and be prepared! Keeping a plastic milk bottle of water in your wardrobe is a good idea. More info will be given from your Sub Warden on arrival.

Knowing your escape route and the location of your meeting area, as well as following fire safety guidelines, is your best defence.

Emergency phones

The emergency campus phone number is 5000.

Emergency phones around campus are for your protection. If you feel insecure for whatever reason just use the phone and the security people will come to this area promptly, and escort you home.

Emergency taxis

If you are out late and need to get home safely, but have no money on you, you can get a taxi to reception at Arana, where you will be given a taxi chit to pay for the fare. The charge will then be passed on to your Arana account. This is for emergencies only.

First Aid

The first aid cabinet in the College is kept at reception. Ask any of our staff for help.
Emergency dial (1)111 .

Arana has a defibrillator located in the Main reception office and Arana was a leader in getting these units placed at Otago University

If you need to get to a doctor you may take a taxi from the College reception, which may be charged to your account at a later date if you do not have the cash at the time.

A staff member will call a taxi and go with you if required.

If you have a first aid certificate and would be willing to help in an emergency please let your Sub Warden or the Warden know when you arrive into the College.

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